How Educators Can Help Learners Succeed
Reality and Existence with Teaching Philosophy and Teaching Interests
My statements of teaching philosophy and teaching interests are reflective of my teaching-learning idealism articulated in my internationally published scholarly works and recognitions where relevant expressions of my passion for innovation in teaching-learning are obviously combined and orchestrated to portray my sincere way of sharing these facts: (1) learning exists if the personal and professional growth benefits are recognized by the learners; no problem is created while they are learning; they have the control for their learning and are made to feel responsibly free/independent in learning; their potentials and expertise are maximized; new knowledge and skills are drawn out from their engagements as well as the learning styles are determined and matched with their multiple intelligences; (2) dominantly, learners in higher education are adults thus the educational climate for them should provide creative approaches that can optimize their potentials, experiences and performance levels. Enabling these adult learners to fully engage themselves in their learning inculcates a perpetual impression of experiential strategies that indeed can change the way they think, feel and move in life; (3) much of significant learning is done by doing and the learners find it more meaningful if what they do are those that serve for their purposes; and (4) teaching-learning practices need to be constantly tried and tested empirically.
Teaching Philosophy: Thinking Uniquely
Teaching is not about being fully engaged in talking as the traditional authoritarianism projects but it is about being creative in selecting options that should work for the learners’ benefits thus leading these learners to be innovative, self-directed and self-determined to acquire knowledge, attitude and skills. The world of the academia is where there are more than endless options for the educators to decide which work and do not work to bring the learners to the climax of fulfillment and satisfaction for a meaningful and significant learning. A prosperous higher education institution is one that transforms the students to lifelong learners in the age of international integration, IT revolution and knowledge economy and highly employable in the work industry in view of the soft skills developed within the context of their learning engagements. If the higher education institutions have to be relevant, the educators have to be responsive to the contemporary teaching-learning situations at hand.
The truth of the matter in the academic environment, is that, there is a gap in making a difference in the teaching-learning process. This void should not be left to proliferate and create a fast growing pot hole. Will there be a higher education institution opting to remain and thrive in a traditional and conservative manner in this fast evolving world of change? If a university has to survive today, it has to imagine beyond the horizons and live today for tomorrow and become a creatively intelligent university with a spiritually shaped culture of responsible teaching.
The writer is the Director, Institute for Social Research, Kampala International University (KIU).
Principal implementer and author of KIU’s project entry on Creative Pedagogy at Postgraduate Level that was recognized and shortlisted by international judges from among 500 global competitors for its outstanding potential to improve pedagogy and employability in a higher education environment (Reimagine Education Awards 2015, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA)